Vacation Fitness Splurges and Saves

This article published with permission from Oyster Blog.

While vacation is a time to relax and let loose, you don’t have to throw your healthy goals in the gutter. A simple morning walk, leisurely bike ride or a personal trainer are all fair game when it comes to getting away. Remember, exercising releases endorphins and endorphins make us happy; so come on, let’s get happy!

Destination: Miami
: Viceroy fitness classes

From Zumba to yoga flow to boot camp, the Viceroy offers a huge range of ways to burn some calories during your stay. If you want something more hardcore, head on over to Canyon Ranch Miami, where your entire experience will be about health and wellness. If you’re looking for more of a combination of healthy fun, Viceroy is your pick. With a plethora of classes and a convenient schedule, this hotel makes staying fit fun. For only $15, hotel guests can enjoy some great workouts.

Splurge: Canyon Ranch Miami Beach

The Wellness Spa features a number of innovative treatments, from Chinese medicine consultations to prenatal massages to Turkish body rituals. Such treatments must be scheduled in advance and don’t come cheap. Frustratingly, the voluminous treatment book in my room didn’t list prices. But the spa does feature a number of complimentary offerings. The most amazing one is Aquavana, a European thermal suite with a Finnish sauna, a crystal steam room, a foot spa, an herbal laconium, an igloo and Experiential Rains treatments. The Experiential Rains are like special effects showers — guests press buttons to choose from Atlantic Storm, Caribbean Monsoon or Polar Mist, each a choreographed shower with sound effects, changing lights, and different water textures and temperatures.

The huge fitness center is equally impressive. Floor-to-ceiling windows offer ocean views from dozens of cardio machines. There’s also a rock-climbing wall. Every day, some 40 free fitness classes are offered throughout the property, from Sunrise Yoga to Beach Conditioning.

Destination: New York
Experience Kits” at Affinia Dumont

Affinia Experience Kits are filled with information and amenities to help you discover and enjoy popular urban spaces. Each kit is delivered in a basket and is free of charge during your stay. The Walking Tour Kit comes with an iPod Shuffle or Nano loaded with Affinia Walking Tour and workout playlists; City Walks deck of cards; city guidebook featuring popular walking tours; StreetWise city map; pedometer; and a towel. The StayFit Kit includes a yoga mat; stretching blocks; yoga, Pilates, and boot camp DVDs; workout bands; wrist and ankle weights; and StreetWise city map.

Splurge: Pool at the Mandarin Oriental, New York

Your morning laps will never be the same. The naturally lit 75-foot spectacular pool on the 36th floor has floor-to-ceiling windows on two sides with views of the city and the Hudson River — an urban oasis in the clouds. Not interested in laps? Try these fun and effective pool workouts for a great workout (no swimming required). Next door to the pool, the luxurious fitness center includes about a dozen LifeFitness cardio machines — each with individual televisions — that look onto the city and Central Park. There are also a few weight machines, a stretching area and even a Kinesis machine.

Destination: San Francisco
 Free personal training session at The W San Francisco

If breaking a sweat with the premier cardio equipment or free and machine weights in The W’s SWEAT Fitness Center isn’t enough for you, turn up the intensity with a personal trainer, available upon request. Looking to soak up San Fran’s beautiful skies? Puma Biomega bike rental is available free of charge; explore the city with this Danish-made bike that is designed to rid everyday annoyances from riding in the urban environment.

Splurge: The Fairmont Heritage Place, San Francisco

The one-, two-, and three-bedroom units — owned as time-shares and sometimes leased for short-term rentals — are outfitted with some of the best technology, appliances and furnishings. Full kitchens have near-professional quality appliances, including wine refrigerators, J.A. Henckels knives, and Wolf gas ranges. Rather than dining out every night, save your calories for a delicious, home-cooked meal with a fully stocked kitchen. Now that’s a splurge.